February 26, 2024

USAID Enhances Food Security in the Beqaa by Supporting a Local Nursery to Produce more than One Million Seedlings

The villages of Aarsal, El Laboue, En Nabi Osmane, Ej Jdaide, Ras Baalbek, and El Qaa in Baalbek-Hermel are home to around 130,000 residents, including 55,000 refugees, who rely heavily on agriculture for their livelihoods. As a result of inflation, local farmers have been struggling to purchase seedlings, which has contributed to decreased agricultural production and diminished incomes, leading to food insecurity and growing tensions over limited livelihoods. To support farmers, local NGO Cooperation Without Borders (CWB) operates a climate-controlled nursery to provide farmers with seedlings at affordable prices. However, its capacity was limited, leaving many without support.

In response, since September 2022, USAID’s Community Support Program (CSP) has been strengthening CWB by providing it with a 1,867 m2 greenhouse, a climate-controlled germination room, an irrigation system, and additional equipment to increase production. In January-February 2024, following completion of the new germination room, CWB was able to produce more than 1,090,000 seedlings in only two months, including tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, zucchini, and melon. This intervention has not only increased seedling quantity, but also reduced seedling production time by 50% due to ongoing cultivation in the germination room where it currently takes only four-to-six days. Moreover, this intervention has enhanced agricultural production in Baalbek-Hermel by providing low-cost, high-quality seedling to nearly 1,000 farmers.

“During the challenging winter months of January and February, CWB enhanced its seedling production capacity thanks to this vital USAID assistance”, said Lorence Farah, CWB member.



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